For the first time in his career, Los Angeles Angels superstar outfielder Mike Trout will not take part in the All-Star Game. The five-time All-Star, and reigning American League MVP, received enough votes to earn a starting role, but will miss the contest as he rehabs from a thumb injury.
That news may have been expected, though some fans still held out for Trout’s return. Both Trout and the Angels shut down that thinking Monday, releasing a statement saying Trout would not be ready in time for the All-Star Game.
UPDATE REGARDING MIKE TROUT AND THE 2017 ALL-STAR GAME pic.twitter.com/ohcUI7vAYP
— Angels PR (@LAAngelsPR) July 3, 2017
In the statement, Trout expresses his gratitude to the fans for voting him into the game. General manager Billy Eppler congratulates Trout on the selection, but then announces that Trout will be too busy with rehab to participate.
“Unfortunately, based on the timeline established for Mike to return from his thumb injury, he will be rehabilitating into the All-Star Break and will therefore not be able to participate in the All-Star festivities,” Eppler said. “We share in our fan’s, and Mike’s, disappointment and we look forward to his return to our everyday roster.”
So, yeah, not unexpected, but still disappointing. Trout was well on his way to another fine season before his injury. Through 47 games, the 25-year-old is hitting .337/.461/.742, with 16 home runs.
This is the first season in which Trout was eligible for the All-Star Game that he won’t play in it. He did not make the All-Star game in 2011, but he wasn’t called up until July 8. Rosters had already been announced for the contest by the time Trout made his major-league debut.
Trout hasn’t missed an All-Star Game since he became eligible in 2012. From 2012 to 2016, Trout has hit .310/.410/.564, with 163 home runs, over 3,423 plate appearances. He’s won two MVP awards, finishing as the runner-up in the other three seasons. He was also the Rookie of the Year award winner in 2012, and has won a Silver Slugger every year since. He also won the All-Star Game MVP award in both 2014 and 2015. Mike Trout is really good, basically. But everyone knows that.
The league will likely name a replacement for Trout, but it hasn’t done so yet. If they are looking for snubs, we have some suggestions.
Trout was slated to start the contest, so one of the AL reserves will have to step in. The AL is currently carrying Mookie Betts, Avisail Garcia and Michael Brantley on its bench. One of them should get the starting nod now that Trout is out.
If there’s anything positive to be gleaned from this, it’s that Trout may return fairly soon. The last part of the team statement said Trout will head to Single-A and go through a full workout Tuesday. After that workout, the team will have a better idea regarding his rehab and return.
Though Trout has missed 33 games, he still ranks sixth in the AL with a 3.3 fWAR. There’s a good shot he’ll still find himself in MVP conversation at the end of the year, though it’s unclear whether he’ll be able to unseat New York Yankees rookies Aaron Judge.
Then again, it’s Mike Trout. We know better than to doubt him at this point.
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